Traditional cigarettes may be decreasing in popularity, but there has been a significant rise in vaping, or the use of e-cigarettes, among young people over the past few years. However, many worry that e-cigarettes may also have serious health consequences that could lead to death. For the first time, a family grieving the loss of a loved one has taken action against an e-cigarette manufacturer.
Juul, one of the leading manufacturers of e-cigarettes, has been sued by the family of an 18-year-old boy, who recently passed away in his sleep, allegedly from breathing complications, after using Juul for years. According to his family’s wrongful death suit against the company, the teen was unaware of the dangers of Juul use for people under the age of 26, and became addicted to vaping after being drawn to its sleek design and the candy-like flavors. The teen apparently tried to quit but was unsuccessful and suffered breathing and lung complications within a year of starting to vape, which led to his hospitalization. The nursing staff had to affix nicotine patches to his skin to keep him comfortable, as a result of his addiction. Shortly after leaving the hospital, he started vaping again, but appeared to be breathing normally the day before his death. However, his father found him unresponsive at home at around 4 a.m. the next morning.
The family’s suit accuses Juul of marketing to teens by using colors and flavors that would appeal to young people and by advertising Juul use as a healthy alternative to smoking cigarettes. However, scientific studies have shown that nicotine in high doses can be especially dangerous for teens, as it can permanently alter their brain structure, and cause lung damage and other catastrophic injuries.
This may be the first of many wrongful death cases against Juul, as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that EVALI, or e-cigarette or vaping product use-associated lung injury, has been diagnosed in almost 1,500 people and caused 33 deaths. If a loved one has passed away due to a company’s negligence, you may have grounds to file a wrongful death claim. A wrongful death attorney in the Beachwood area can help build your case to recover the compensation your family deserves.